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"Time to scrap Regional Spatial Strategy and let communities decide"- Farron

March 25, 2009 1:54 PM

South Lakeland's attempts to create more affordable homes for local people are being hampered by central government, according to local MP Tim Farron. The current Local Development Framework process in South Lakeland has been prompted by the Government's Regional Spatial Strategy which forces Councils to identify ridiculously large amounts of green land for development.

Tim Farron has called on the Government to scrap the Regional Spatial Strategy and - as Liberal Democrat Shadow Environment Secretary - has pledged that Liberal Democrats would abolish the Strategy and allow local communities to make their own decisions about where housing should be situated.

Mr Farron said: "I believe that the whole process is totally flawed. This is another top down government policy that lays the parameters of policy and leaves local councils to make really tough decisions. The District Council is being extremely democratic and open about this process and are doing everything they can to make sure that choices are made by communities, but the system needs to be replaced."

"The spatial strategy should be scrapped and work should instead begin within local communities to find the best ways to support small developments of social and affordable housing. These developments should be integrated into our communities and we must ensure that these homes are affordable for local people.

"The Government should finally make more money available to our local Housing Associations - creating jobs and homes where they are most needed."